Week ending April 08, 2001


News on Ports

Indian Major Ports have shown growth in cargo handling:

Visakhapatnam Port has emerged as the country�s premier port by handling its highest throughput of 44.6 million tonnes (MT) during 2000-01. Besides this, the port has set a national record by handling 4.43 MT in May 2000 exceeding the previous best record of 4.40 MT set by Kandla port in October, 1999. The port has projected a cargo throughput of 46 MT by 2002-03, 50 MT by 2003-04, 71 MT by 2006-07 and 104 MT by 2011-12.

Paradip Port Trust has registered significant traffic growth of 46% in 2000-2001. The total throughput during the year was 19.9 MT against 13.6 MT in 1999-2000. The major traffics that contributed significantly to the growth of Paradip traffic were fertiliser raw material and iron ore. The Shipping Ministry had set a traffic target of 16.7 MT for the port, which was subsequently revised to 19.2 MT.

New Mangalore Port has handled a throughput of 17.89 million tonnes during the current fiscal against 17.60 MT handled during the previous year, thereby registering a growth rate of 1.65% over the last year. The substantial increase was due to an increase in the handling of MRPL crude and products, fertilisers, LPG, cement, containerised commodities etc. With the commissioning of two new jetties, the POL handling capacity of the port has increased from 7.5 MT per annum to 19.20 MT per annum.

Cargo handling at Chennai Port has increased by registering a 10.5% growth rate during the current fiscal over the previous year. The port handled 41.22 MT against 37.44 MT in the previous year. The port income for the year ending March 31, 2001 is likely to be around Rs.5 billion against Rs.4.5 billion last year.

The Gujarat Pipavav Port (GPPL) plans financial restructuring on a move to rescind its existing high cost debt and to finance its expansion projects. The plan also includes introduction of fresh funds by widening the equity base from the existing Rs.1.38 billion to Rs.1.6 billion. The GPPL hopes that the restructuring action would help reduce the high cost debt of Rs.0.15 billion to Unit Trust of India and Rs.0.1 billion to Industrial Development Bank of India (IDBI).

Meanwhile, the port has already exceeded its cargo throughput target by handling 4.5 million tonnes and the management has projected a cargo throughput target of 6.5 MT to 7 MT for the forthcoming year.

Calcutta Port Trust has recorded a drop in traffic in 2000-01 compared to 1999-2000 by handling a total volume of 30 MT in the current fiscal against 31 MT in 1999-2000. The closure of Kidderpore dock and the draft restriction in the Hooghly river at Maragolia limiting ship movement are believed to have contributed to the drop in traffic.

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News on Shipping

Great Eastern Shipping Company has decided to protest against Petronet LNG (PLL) for awarding a $1.2 billion contract to the consortium led by Mitsui OSK Line of Japan including state-owned Shipping Corporation of India, NYK Line and K Line. The protest is against the deviations in the bid submitted by Mitsui Consortium not conforming to the terms of the bid. The bid includes a fixed component as well as a variable one called the escalation factor. Although the Mitsui-led consortium emerged as the lowest bidder on the fixed component with a charter hire rate of $68,900 per day, it linked its escalation factor to the US-consumer price index (CPI), which was a violation of the bidding terms.

Petronet LNG has signed the charter party agreement with its ship-owners and operators for the LNG shipping deal involving transportation of 5 million tonnes per annum of LNG from Qatar for its Dahej regasification terminal in Gujarat. This has enabled the shipowners and operators, the Mitsui O.S.K. Lines-led consortium to sign the ship building contract with Korea�s Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Company for two membrane-type LNG tankers of 138,000 cubic metres capacity each at a total cost of $370 million.

Union Government has removed the Quantitative Restrictions (QRs) on tugs, boats and barges through an amendment made to the Exim Policy to provide boost to the inland water transport sector. The move would enable these categories of vessels to be imported freely into the country under Open General License (OGL). Along with the above mentioned vessels, the government has also decided to remove the QRs on launches, trawlers, factory ships, yachts, sail boats, motor boats, canoes, pusher crafts, life boats and inflatable rafts by making them freely importable.

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News on Logistics

Union Transport plans to strengthen the supply chain in India and offer customised services. The decision is to focus on the domestic market to capitalise on the vast opportunities and the demand not met for logistics in the country. With its rapid growth in India within a year, the company has earned a turnover of Rs.1 billion and is looking to an �exciting phase� of the business in a couple of years.

The National Highways Authority of India�s (NHAI) target to raise Rs.36 billion through market borrowings during the current financial year is not likely to be scaled down in spite of its warm response to its recent tax-free highway bonds issue. NHAI has planned to raise Rs.138 billion through market borrowing programmes over the next four years for part financing the ongoing Rs.540 billion National Highway Development Project of which, Rs.36 billion is planned for the current fiscal with Rs.62 billion to be raised in 2002-03 and the balance in the following fiscal year.

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Paradip Port Trust has invited sealed tenders under two-cover system.

Tender Notice Number: CE/TECH/OIL-11/2000/502
Name of the work: Hydraulic Dredging of Oil Jetty
Cost of tender document: Rs.5, 000/-
Period of contract: 4 months
Last date & time of sale of tender documents: 18.04.2001 & 3.30 pm
Date & Time of opening of tender: 02.05.2001 & 4.00 pm
Earnest Money: Rs.1, 00,000/-


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